This week, Pastor Chris continued in our series through the life of David with a word about friendship. David had people around him who stood by him through difficulty, pain, ease, and celebration. Those he called friends were often the key to helping him to endure in Christ. Jonathan was a fierce, and faithful warrior of God who desired to walk closely with David. These two were committed to each other in Christ, while King Saul became jealous and fearful of David’s anointing. Pastor Chris encouraged each of us to cultivate friendship, and to pursue forgiveness and healing where friendships have caused pain.
1 Samuel 18:1–2 (ESV)
1 As soon as he had finished speaking to Saul, the soul of Jonathan was knit to the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul. 2 And Saul took him that day and would not let him return to his father’s house.
3 Keys to Godly Friendship
- Uncomplicated Friendship – Their relationship was simple.
David and Jonathan’s Uncomplicated Friendship
- They were each committed to God first, then to one another.
- They let nothing come between them.
- They drew closer when their friendship was tested.
- They remained friends to the end.
“A friend is the one who comes in when the whole world has gone out.”
1 Samuel 18:3 (ESV)
3 Then Jonathan made a covenant with David, because he loved him as his own soul.
2. Loyal Friendship
2 Samuel 9:1 (ESV)
1 And David said, “Is there still anyone left of the house of Saul, that I may show him kindness for Jonathan’s sake?”
1 Samuel 18:4–5 (ESV)
4 And Jonathan stripped himself of the robe that was on him and gave it to David, and his armor, and even his sword and his bow and his belt. 5 And David went out and was successful wherever Saul sent him, so that Saul set him over the men of war. And this was good in the sight of all the people and also in the sight of Saul’s servants.
3. Preferential Friendship – They put the other first.
1 Samuel 23:17 (ESV)
17 And he said to him, “Do not fear, for the hand of Saul my father shall not find you. You shall be king over Israel, and I shall be next to you. Saul my father also knows this.”
1 Samuel 18:6–9 (ESV)
6 As they were coming home, when David returned from striking down the Philistine, the women came out of all the cities of Israel, singing and dancing, to meet King Saul, with tambourines, with songs of joy, and with musical instruments. 7 And the women sang to one another as they celebrated, “Saul has struck down his thousands, and David his ten thousands.” 8 And Saul was very angry, and this saying displeased him. He said, “They have ascribed to David ten thousands, and to me they have ascribed thousands, and what more can he have but the kingdom?”
Friendship Killer #1: Jealousy Induced Anger
Proverbs 14:30 (NLT)
A relaxed attitude lengthens life; jealousy rots it away.
Matthew 27:18 (NLT)
(He knew very well that the Jewish leaders had arrested Jesus out of envy.)
Acts 7:9 (NLT)
“These sons of Jacob were very jealous of their brother Joseph, and they sold him to be a slave in Egypt. But God was with him
Acts 17:5 (NLT)
But the Jewish leaders were jealous, so they gathered some worthless fellows from the streets to form a mob and start a riot. They attacked the home of Jason, searching for Paul and Silas so they could drag them out to the crowd.
- Resent rival.
- Wish they would be removed.
- Seeks ways to harm them in word or action.
Manifestations of Jealousy
- Jealousy undermines others.
- Jealousy attacks another’s character.
- Jealousy criticizes unjustly.
- Jealousy >> Bitterness >> Irrational
2 Forms of Jealousy
- “I want what someone else has.”
- “I wish they didn’t have what they have.”
Friendship Killer #2: Casting Judgment
1 Samuel 18:9 (ESV)
9 And Saul eyed David from that day on.
- Do you know what’s in that person’s heart?
- Have you put words in their mouth?
- Do you know what they believe or have you cast judgment already?
Matthew 7:1–5 (The Message)
1 “Don’t pick on people, jump on their failures, criticize their faults—unless, of course, you want the same treatment. 2 That critical spirit has a way of boomeranging. 3 It’s easy to see a smudge on your neighbor’s face and be oblivious to the ugly sneer on your own. 4 Do you have the nerve to say, ‘Let me wash your face for you,’ when your own face is distorted by contempt? 5 It’s this whole traveling road-show mentality all over again, playing a holier-than-thou part instead of just living your part. Wipe that ugly sneer off your own face, and you might be fit to offer a washcloth to your neighbor.
1 Samuel 18:10–16 (ESV)
10 The next day a harmful spirit from God rushed upon Saul, and he raved within his house while David was playing the lyre, as he did day by day. Saul had his spear in his hand. 11 And Saul hurled the spear, for he thought, “I will pin David to the wall.” But David evaded him twice. 12 Saul was afraid of David because the Lord was with him but had departed from Saul. 13 So Saul removed him from his presence and made him a commander of a thousand. And he went out and came in before the people. 14 And David had success in all his undertakings, for the Lord was with him. 15 And when Saul saw that he had great success, he stood in fearful awe of him. 16 But all Israel and Judah loved David, for he went out and came in before them.
Friendship Killer #3: Perceiving Others as a Threat
- Do you need that Friend today?
Proverbs 18:24 (ESV)
24 A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.
John 15:13 (ESV)
13 Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.
- How valuable is friendship to you? Think of your closest friends: what aspects of your relationship have knit you together?
- Our text shows two roads of friendship: the road of Jonathan (commitment, loyalty, faith) and Saul’s (jealousy, fear, bitterness). Which road of friendship do you find yourself walking down most often? Do you struggle at all with jealousy or bitterness in friendships?
- How did jealousy affect Saul’s relationship with David? How did he react in his jealousy?
- Are there any former friendship wounds that you need to pursue healing from? Get healing/restoration prayer from a friend or mentor this week.
- Do you struggle with jealousy or bitterness in a specific friendship? Repent this week with a trusted mentor and uproot this stronghold unto healing and restored friendship.
- Do you struggle with making new friends? Determine this week to be a friend first. Ask the Lord to highlight anyone who will be committed to you in friendship.